Up to 69% of citizens in Sub-Saharan African nations like Togo and Guinea live on less than $2 per day. Healthcare is simply not an option, either because it does not exist or it is completely unaffordable. In low-income countries, it is estimated that 85% of children need treatment for a surgical condition before the age of 15. Lack of treatment or a sometimes simple surgical solution often leads to complications, lifelong disability or death.
Globally, five billion people have no access to safe surgery. In low-income and lower-middle-income countries, nine out of ten people have no access to basic surgical care. But don’t let the statistics numb you. Because behind every number there is a name, a face, and a story. They will break your heart, but they will inspire you to take action—as Mercy Ships volunteers have for more than 35 years.